In the age of social media, it often seems that perception is everything.
Everyone wants to have the perfect life, the best selfies, a flawlessly decorated adobe, and let’s not forget…a relationship worthy of the hashtag ‘relationship goals’. Even things like simply being a decent parent are sometimes used as an all-out ‘like’ grab.
Amid all of this chaos, it really doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see how someone can feel that their own life just isn’t measuring up.
If someone would have asked my thoughts about social media years ago, I probably would have said that the Internet and reality are two totally separate entities. As an 80s baby, I still have the luxury of seeing a very clear distinction. However, there are those among us who have never known a world without these alternatives for interaction.
Social Media is real life, and unfortunately, in some cases, it’s death too.
People are literally committing suicide on Facebook Live (many of which are children). Thankfully, that tragedy has never made its way to my own timeline. However, I personally know people who have deactivated their accounts simply because they felt their lives couldn’t compare with those of their ‘friends’.
I’m no psychologist, but I honestly believe this is due to the unrealistic expectations set by the click and scroll world.
This farce of perfection needs to end.
I’m not denouncing social media by any means – it definitely has its place. However, it isn’t the ‘be all, end all’ that some of us believe it to be.
No lie, as I’m sitting here writing, my friend inboxed me, laughing about the new option to appoint someone to operate your Facebook page in the event of your demise.
So we’re bequeathing social outlets now? *rolls eyes*
Seriously, it’s called Facebook Legacy if anybody wants to look it up.
But let’s move along.
There has always been something insanely and miraculously beautiful about authenticity, so why not embrace it?
I’m not saying that everyone with a feel good post is an attention-seeking manipulator of the truth; good things happen and they should certainly be celebrated. But sometimes… a lot of times… life isn’t as grand as our filters would lead others to believe.
Am I suggesting that folks start airing their dirty laundry?
If there’s one thing I hate seeing, it’s an individual who feels that they have to address every disagreement, wrongdoer, and private issue in the ‘status’ section of their profile. Guys, just because the box says “what’s on your on mind”, doesn’t mean that you actually have to tell it *smile*.
What I mean by embracing the truth is: simply accepting the beauty of where you are in your own life. Unapologetically.
So what if you don’t own the $400,000 home on the most luxurious side of town or work in your field of choice?
Who cares if you can’t afford to jet set at a moment’s notice to the other side of the world or pose in ridiculously awkward positions to show off red bottom shoes?
And really, when it truly comes down to it, does anyone actually care how lovely your relationship is if it doesn’t involve them?
Society spends so much time fixated on appearances that the truly incredible moments often slip through our grasp. I believe the best way to avoid the funk that sometimes come along with surfing the net is to keep everything in perspective.
That chick with the flawless pictures? It probably took her about six tries before she got a shot good enough to post.
The couple who makes you want to #RealLove #BlackLove #RelationshipGoals? They have their issues too.
And that gorgeous house that you would drop multiple stacks on if you had it; no question asked? Someone lives there and they’re probably day dreaming about more.
No one’s life is more valuable than your own.
No matter your life status, we all have struggles. We all have areas we can improve in and skeletons in the closet (some of us have entire graveyards). And that’s okay.
If you’ve accomplished much of what you wanted to in life, great! Now help someone else. If you have material things, that’s just a bonus.
And if you haven’t arrived at the point where you’d like to be, you’re still alive and that means you still have time. Isn’t that a refreshing thought?
I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t have it all together. I’m not the best anything. Sometimes, I don’t even think that I am the best version of myself.
Nonetheless, I’m learning and evolving. Listening and growing. Slowly but surely, I am developing into the woman I want to become…and the process is freaking amazing. But it is a process. A process that is unfortunately often shunned and/or avoided due to the social media illusion of faultlessness.
So here’s the takeaway:
Be proud of wherever you are in life.
Don’t allow external pressures to shame you out of the fullness of your journey. Don’t compare yourself to anyone but the person that you were yesterday, and always strive to be better than her.
If you’re in a good spot, cool. If you’re struggling, things can change.
It can be difficult to keep a level head with so much going on in the world around you, so every now and then it may be necessary to log off. But whatever you do, remember, you’re better than perfection.
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